Sunday, October 24, 2010

...Repent in Leisure

I wrote this for my writing group last week. Our prompt was "A Hasty Decision" and this sort of came to me the night before.

“Marry in haste, repent in leisure,” my Aunt Martha said as she fluffed my veil. “I swear, you look a treat, Sammie!”

“Thanks, Auntie M,” I said, hugging her.

I adjusted the wreath of flowers on my head, gazing at myself in the mirror. My hair was a mess, but the veil was gorgeous. Martha was making it for me from silk flowers and lace. It was lovely. My dress was still being made, so I stood there modeling it in jeans and a T-shirt.

“Just gotta ask again, Sammie. Are you sure about this boy?”

“Very sure, Auntie. RJ's fantastic. You'll love him. Mama loves him.”

“Well, just cause my baby sister likes somebody, don't mean I will.”

“He's the best. Honest!”

“Didn't you say that about what's his name? The carpenter?”

I couldn't look at myself anymore. “Yeah. But I was wrong as can be about Bobby. This is different, Auntie.”

“And you said that about that policeman.”

I sighed. She had a point. I'd said that about Tom too. Let's face it, my experience with men isn't all that great. My record relationship so far is this one with RJ. We've been dating four months and are getting married in six weeks. At least that's the plan, provided something doesn't come along to screw it up.

“My point is,” she continued. “Sammie Jean, you ain't got the best track record of any girl. You fall in love too easy. You get your heart all trampled on and then regret like crazy you ever hooked up with that lunatic man in the first place. You sure this ain't another time like the last...twelve?”

“Not twelve, Auntie. Just two.”

“Seems like a lot more than two. Didn't you almost marry that florist fella?”

I'd forgotten about Dean the florist. Good grief, I'd forgotten half a dozen men I'd dated too. She had a point, damn close to twelve. I hadn't been engaged to them all, but RJ was the third. Or was it the fourth? But the only one who'd got so far as setting a date and buying the material for a dress. Mama was sewing that, Auntie M. was making the veil. My Aunt Tessa was making the bouquets and Aunt Mamie the cake. My mama's got a bunch of sisters and they're all good at different things.

“This time, for sure! I'm really positive about RJ.”

Her eyes looked sad and I knew she was thinking of some other guy I'd said that about. She thought I was gonna back out again—like I'd always done before.

“Can't help thinkin' a man who'll propose and get married real fast—he ain't reliable, Sammie Jean. I feel like I'm wasting precious time making something for a wedding that ain't ever gonna be.”

“You're not wasting your time, Auntie. This time, for sure! I love RJ so much! He's real special. And I know I've said that a million times before, but this time for sure! Wait until you meet him. He's coming by at seven for dinner.”

“I guess we're all expected?”

I nodded, taking the wreath of flowers off my head.

“Well, I reckon I can give a few minutes.”

We spent the rest of the afternoon working on wedding plans and cooking dinner. RJ was right on time. My aunts were all in the living room waiting for him to arrive. He knocked on the door and you'd think someone lit a fire under those women. They lined up in birth order to meet him: Martha, Tessa, Mamie and my mother, Reanne. I felt like making a drum roll when I opened up that door.

RJ walked in, gave me a kiss and turned to see that room full of females. He's real good looking, dark brown hair and big green eyes. He wears a real diamond stud in his left ear. That surprised my mama some, but she didn't complain. I introduced him to my aunts.

“Wait a second,” Martha said loudly. “You're that doctor, aren't ya?”

“Yes, ma'am. Sure am! I work at the Emergency room.”

“You sewed up my boy when he cut his foot,” Aunt Tessa said with a grin.

“And you took the splinter outta my neighbor's eye,” Aunt Mamie said.

“This is who you're gonna marry?” Aunt Martha asked.

“Yup, Auntie. This is RJ.”

“Well, baby darlin'. You forget everything your auntie said and just go on and be happy.”

RJ wasn't quite sure what to think, but he took it all in stride. He charmed those aunts of mine and had them about eating outta his hand before dinner was done.

After he went home, Aunt Martha took me aside and gave me a hug. “Baby girl, you did good.”

“Thanks, Auntie.”

“I take back all the bad I said. You're gonna do just fine.”

“Thanks, Auntie.”

“One thing though, you gonna let him wear that earring?”

“Yes, ma'am.”

“Well then, he better get you a ring at least twice that big, or it's gonna be competition,” she declared as she walked out the door.

I sat down on the couch and couldn't stop laughing. Finally, I'd found a man that everyone loved just as much as me.

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